Welcome to Sail-World.com's Volvo Ocean Race Newsletter for 26 May 2012
Leg 7 of the Volvo Ocean Race is well underway, having started last Sunday in Miami, Florida.
Following from the close finish to Leg 6, Leg 7 has developed into a cracker, with numerous lead changes, and the lead boats clearly more intent on match racing than gambling their chances on a break out.
Initially the race looked to be developing into a procession, however Camper's move from last place into first a day or so ago, chopping back a deficit of about 80nm, got fans onto the edges of their seats, as the competitors tacked their way across the Atlantic.
The reality if Leg 7 is that no boat can afford to drop places, and vital overall race points, through a gamble which doesn't pay off.
The lesson of Leg 6 seems to have been again applied in Leg 7, where the crews realised that they had to go back to some basic two boat testing processes, if they were to avoid being rolled by a competitor.
The current issue is an area of light winds between the fleet and the finish line in Lisbon, Portugal - about five days away.
The reaction of the weather routing programs is to tell the navigators to head north, get in a stronger breeze, and then head east for Lisbon.
But that involves taking away from the mark, so to speak, and of course a boat that elects to break east before the others, and gets into the breeze, will be away.
Latest wind projections have it that the fleet will be in very light winds for 12 hours, and then it is back to the double digit speeds.
Puma to the north, enjoys better breezes and faster speeds than Camper - Leg 7 26 May, 2011/12 Volvo Ocean Race Virtual Eye/Volvo Ocean Race
If you want a new view on the race check out the action via the new 3D graphic tracker from Virtual Eye. This was allows the viewer to fly around the Volvo fleet in a virtual helicopter - so you can be anywhere from high above the fleet to get the overall perspective, or dropped right on the stern of one of the boats to get a perspective of what lies ahead in terms of boats and land masses.
One of the many great features is the ability to see the instrument displays on the boats - so that experienced sailing fans can get a real 'seat of the pants' feel for the action and what is going to happen next. Look at the difference in the boat speeds (top read-out) in the graphic above - sailing 4kts faster even for a few hours, makes a big difference in a fleet as close as this one.
Some dramatic course changes have taken place over the past 12 hours on the Volvo Ocean Race, Leg 7 - May 25, 2012 at 1300hrs UTC PredictWind.com
Of course, nothing can forecast the weather and winners in the same way that the routing function of Predictwind is able, and we are running both when the going gets close in the Leg – which so far has been for most of it.
Another new feature of this leg is the updated Livestream coverage which you can follow by new.livestream.com/volvooceanrace/Leg7!by_clicking_here. Livestream allows you to see skipper interviews, live and uncut, plus links to the latest updates.
Stay tuned to www.sail-world.com for the latest Volvo Ocean Race news, updated on a 24x7 basis by our editorial team around the world. We never sleep.
If you wish to see Sail-World's complete Volvo OR coverage, go to www.sail-world.com - and click on the Volvo Ocean Race button in the top header bar, you'll see all stories for all regions from this exciting race - all updated as the race unfolds.
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